Before Marvel Studios became the entertainment juggernaut fans know and love today, the studio had to take more than a few risks to earn the rewards that followed. Even after 2012's The Avengers becoming the third highest grossing movie of all-time in the months following release, Marvel Studios took one of their biggest gambles yet with 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy.
Utilizing a group of characters that were basically a mystery to the world, this film came as the first real dive into the cosmic realm of the MCU. Despite Guardians of the Galaxy being centered around the Earth-based Peter Quill, it featured a team made up of two aliens, a genetically engineered raccoon, and a living tree. As is the Marvel way, they became an overwhelming success and kicked off one of the most popular franchises within the MCU.
Casting for these roles was quite the endeavor as well, and news has just arrived that sheds new light on the franchise's beginnings over seven years ago.
In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter's Awards Chatter podcast, via The Independent, Hollywood star Amanda Seyfried gave a definitive reason as to why she turned down the role of Gamora in 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy. After giving other explanations this summer regarding this decision, Seyfried held nothing back as she offered this response:
"I didn’t want to be part of the first Marvel movie that bombed. I said, ‘Who wants to see a movie about a talking tree and a raccoon?’ Which is clearly – I was very wrong."
Seyfried went on to explain further how nervous she was to have this film be a potential black mark on her resume, had it been a financial or critical flop:
"The script was great, it was all based on not wanting to be ‘that guy’. Because if you’re the star of a giant movie like that, and it bombs, Hollywood does not forgive you. I’ve seen that happen to people and it was a giant, giant fear. I thought, is it worth it?"
WHAT THIS MEANS
Amanda Seyfried is part of a group of dozens of Hollywood's most notable names to almost appear in a Marvel Studios movie, although her story has grown more layered every time her rejection to play Gamora is brought up. In past interviews, Seyfried mentioned that she wasn't fond of having to be painted completely green, but she has never mentioned this fear that Guardians of the Galaxy could have been Marvel Studios' first flop until now.
In reality, as insane as this may seem in 2020, Guardians of the Galaxy was a huge risk for the MCU, as Marvel Studios had incorporated semi-familiar names as its tiular heroes up until Gunn's film. Discussions on the potential of this movie flopping were rampant on the internet and in news streams almost since the day it was announced, but that sentiment was vehemently reversed upon the film's release in August 2014. The MCU's tenth movie became the third-highest grossing movie in the franchise at the time, and it blew the door open for Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 in 2017 and an upcoming Vol. 3 sometime during Phase 4 or 5.
Could Seyfried ever join the MCU now that the franchise has had hit after hit over the last decade? Only time will tell.
The Guardians of the Galaxy could make their next appearance as a team in 2022's Thor: Love and Thunder, which has already confirmed the addition of Chris Pratt as Star-Lord.